Skip navigation

Category Archives: Jehovah series

Wow – after all these months of talking about “I’m gonna be an intern this summer at Urban Vision” , it’s actually happened! Well, that is to say, we had our first meeting. And it went SO well, I just wanted to share with you a bit of what they’re like, and how powerfully faith-stretching it is!

First, I had to go to UV early and help with the Fiasco – I mean, the Kid’s Club. I just knew Mr. Rodney was up to something when he invited – I mean, commanded – me to help with 3-year-olds. I have met my match, y’all. A tiny (RED! NOO) room full of children who are all crawling on you at the exact same time, yelling things, taking too long in the bathroom, getting lost, yelling some more…. I think 4-5 3-year-olds are nice. Not twenty. Anyway, I endured, slightly set aback when the leader commented to me, “My, these kids, they’s doing real good today!” Really, I almost fainted. I don’t want to see a bad day. No sir. 

Thankfully, I’d packed some of my bread and Craisins, and before the intern meeting really started, I ate them and gained my brain’s control. I got to meet the other intern, Maggie (from the outside, Jeff calls us. It’s his nice way of saying we don’t attend Urban Vision; we volunteer there.). She was really sweet, and we’ve both had similar in-a-sport-and-pulled-out-temporarily-for-UV stories. Jeff told us and April Paw to lead worship, which just meant picking out one song each and talking about what it meant to us. Even though there were 8 teens total, I was still kinda nervous about talking. I detest public speaking, y’all. But I picked “Trading My Sorrows”, and managed a fun little speech on how when I’m having a bad day, I’ll stick my struggles in. “I’m trading my fear, I’m trading my jealousy, I’m trading them all for the joy of the Lord.” Not as bad as I thought, for sure ;). And it was really fun to worship with the other teens.

Then, Jeff asked us each to share a time in our lives when we’d really felt close to God -or- something God’s been teaching us lately. Currently, I’m struggling with a fear of loneliness and some slight possessive-ness with my best friend. So as I sat there, heart beating much to fast, I felt nudged to reach into my pocket for my index card. Sammie’s inspired me, at the beginning of the day, to write a verse or word from God on that card, and carry it as a reminder of His love. So the verses I wrote on that card were from Psalm 71, mostly about God being our strong habitation. It was kind of fun, too, how just recently, God showed me a treasure in the Great Commission. So when my turn came, I went up front with a Bible and my index card… worried. But you know, my Daddy just held me the whole way.

I talked of how I’ve been fearful of loneliness – how I cling to my best friend and encouragement from people I know. Encouragement and admiration aren’t wrong, but I totally cling to them WAY too much – from people. I told of my desire to go and be a missionary in Thailand, teaching the refugees and how I was scared because I would be alone. Then I read from my index card, truly comforted by my Daddy’s sweet voice, “I AM your strong habitation! I gotcha tight.” Then I read through the Great Commission.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you alwayseven to the end of the age.” Amen.

(Matthew 28:19-20)

I love how Jesus ended on a promise, not a command! ❤ You….

So after sharing all that, we had some accountability-group time. I’m with Ba Bler (Bobbi, more commonly known). I shared a struggle I have and how she could help, and she did the same. And then I felt like I was Sam, talking to me… which is a very very good thing! I was on God-high, telling her what I do when I don’t want to read the Bible. I told her, “Sometimes, I just say ‘Look, Daddy… I REALLY don’t want to dig into Your Word today! Help!’, and then open my Bible, and BAM! There’s something there I really needed.” Well, I plunked a Bible open at the same time I was saying all this, and found this gem:

Again the word of the LORD of hosts came, saying, “Thus says the LORD of hosts:
‘ I am zealous for Zion with great zeal;
With great fervor I am zealous for her.’” ~Zechariah 8:1-2

We’re totally part of this promise as Gentiles – God’s grafted us on to the Jewish vine, so to speak.

Let that sink in! God, the perfect, all-powerful, amazing God, is jealous for us! Qanna – jealous. Wow… and that was a day I really needed to hear that. I’m not sure how much it helped Bobbi but it certainly blessed me!

Hehe I didn’t really start this post intending it to be a “Jehovah series” post. But lookie what God did! (As dance class today proved, when I’m on God-high, I’m also quite talkative and can’t stay on a topic – or, as Sam likes to say, “giddy”. We totally did the exact same thing 3 times today at class, and I got in minor trouble -again- for talking too long after class. This is joy overflowing and out of control, y’all! I just love it ;).)

I just pray our God would fill you with assurance like He did for me today – that He would continually remind you He’s more than enough for all of your needs… He’s just too precious :). So I’m gonna rest in His arms for awhile, and do my Latin, and look at the lovely sunshine. And listen to the birds…

And I’m also going to TRY to stop talking! 😀 (I love Your joy, Daddy….)

The Lord – is jealous. Jealous for you.

In reading “Abide in Christ”, I find myself quite frequently getting stressed. All was cool when I thought of Jesus as the vine, and I was one of His branches. Or how our Father, the Gardner, made us one… as in, Jesus chooses to delight in me and use me to further His kingdom! He could totally do it all by Himself. But He chooses to have me, you, His body, do it.

Yes yes, but then it started to get complicated (or so the Enemy wishes I would feel). “Of God are ye in Christ Jesus, who was made unto us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption.” -1 Corinthians 1:30. Murray proceeded to do chapters on each of those aspects, but I’ll admit, it started getting really confusing! Okay, Lord, I have to remember – abide in You as my wisdom *feelin great*, righteousness *I’m not guilty anymore, I’m not filthy anymore!*, sanctification *uh* and redemption *uh*.

Do you ever have times where you wish you got something in the Bible and you just couldn’t? I read the sanctification and redemption chapters, like, five times each. And to be honest, it made the aspects of sanctification and redemption seem to drag! What’s going on, God?!

Ouch. Then to make everything worse, I had a guilt attack this morning!! And the last thing I wanted to worry about was abiding in Christ. No, Daddy, I gotta get over this guilt first. I have to ask *person who shall remain nameless* what she is really feeling… figure out if I’m really meant to be a dancer! Then I have chemistry, and You know I can’t focus on You during that… do everything like working for God!

I forgot the wonderful wisdom God whispers in my ear… through Murray:

On my part, abiding is nothing but the acceptance of my position, the consent to be kept there, the surrender of faith to the strong Vine to hold the feeble branch… And as you keep your gaze fixed on Him, holding you and waiting to lift you up, could you not this very day take the upward step and rise to enter upon this blessed life of abiding in Christ? Yes, begin at once, and say,

O my Jesus, if You bid me, and if You engage to lift and keep me there, I will venture. Trembling, but trusting, I will say, ‘Jesus, I do abide in You.’

You can trust Him to keep you trusting and abiding.

That is the love of Our Father. He sees us, weak, feeble branches that we are, yet He seeks to lift us up. And all we have to do is surrender to His love. I find it really convicting to think of all the distractions that would seek to prevent me from surrendering to Christ and trusting Him, and to realize how sad Jesus must feel.

“Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.” -Phil. 3:12

Idea being, Jesus wants me to abide in Him – and He’s willing to keep me there, if only I’ll surrender! I will follow after :).

Take this with you today! He’s jealous for you, He loves you, and He wants you abiding in Him! The Enemy is the only one who would tell you otherwise…and make you feel like you have to earn His holy jealousy.

Very recently, I went on a “retreat” to my best friend Sammie’s house. I must admit, it was the best weekend of my entire life – I learned so much about my precious Daddy!! And learned to love her more, too :). I really want to share what I learned, but I learned so much, there’s no way an amateur writer can combine it all… So I’m gonna do it in bits – maybe a “Jehovah – __” series? I’m assuming they’re all going to overlap in some way or another, but I’ll do my best to keep on task.

Jehovah-Rapha, for you non-Hebrew speakers, means “The Lord is my healer”. (No worries, I don’t speak Hebrew myself. I did a Bible study on the names of God, and I wrote down the different ones in Hebrew.) I went to Sam’s house expecting great things from God, but not healing in the ways I expected! It was really interesting – when I got there, Sam told me, “You know, Michelle, I really feel like this is going to be a great healing experience for you.” Her family is extremely special – it models the Church family so well! And that was where the healing began.

Here’s a bit from my second favorite book (which Sammie introduced to me on this retreat), “Abide in Christ” by Andrew Murray. Totally how I felt, for a long time.

Either way, it was not long before the bright joy of your first love was lost, and your path, instead of being like the path of the just, shining more and more unto the perfect Day, became like Israel’s wandering in the desert – ever on the way, never very far, yet always coming short of the promised rest.

Oh yes, I was thinking. Every day, I read something in the Bible – “Love your neighbor as yourself” – got all inspired, failed through the course of the day, and prayed that night “Wow, God, I’m sorry… I’ll try to do better tomorrow. Can You help me? You know how much I want to love my neighbor…” And the next day, I would try again! BAM! failure struck again. “Hey, God…. this didn’t work! Tomorrow?”

Every day, I came short of that promised rest that our Savior so badly wanted to give me. It was like I didn’t believe that GOD could teach and keep me all day!

It is not the yoke, but the resistance to the yoke, that causes the difficulty; the wholehearted surrender to Jesus, as both our Master and our Keeper, finds and secures the rest.

What? You mean… all I have to do is surrender? But what about loving my neighbor? What about taking up my cross? What about keeping my mind on You, so I’m at peace? What about not letting my heart be troubled? Huh?

And my Beloved answers, “Abide in Me.” (John 15:4).

Abiding in Jesus is nothing but the giving up of oneself to be ruled and taught and led, and so resting in the arms of everlasting Love. … With this grace secured, we have strength for every duty, courage for every struggle, a blessing in every cross, and the joy of life eternal in death itself.

This is where the healing begins! I’m still working on the whole idea of surrendering to God, and especially being pursued by God. I confess, on days that just creeps me out. Yeah, here is where the Enemy sneaks in…

There was the spiritual healing. I can’t do it – but God can, and He wants me simply to surrender. In that surrender is the cultivation of soil ready to grow good fruits! *sigh of contentedness*.

And yes, there was a physical healing too! If you’ve read my blog post about dance, you’ll know my legs are a centimeter different in length. I had to wear a heel lift for dancing, which wasn’t in and of itself a pain. It was such a joy to be dancing that I didn’t care about a heel lift! But Sam and I talked, and she really felt the Holy Spirit leading her to pray for my leg. I didn’t see a point, really, but I reluctantly let her have at it. I felt so blessed afterward!!!

Then, weird things happened. First, I got these strange growing pains in my leg. I was convinced they were from walking… but that glimmer of hope resided in me. “God CAN heal me. I have faith He can.” Then, I stopped using my heel lift – only to find my hip sore again! “What’s up, Lord?” The next week, I took a dance class without the heel lift – strangely enough, it didn’t hurt! The next dance class didn’t hurt my hip either. I ran – which normally makes my hip ache to no end – and it STILL didn’t hurt!

Well – I can’t really tell you if my leg grew. Sammie and I tried our best to measure it, but that didn’t work too well. I can tell you, though, that my Daddy divinely intervened – whether He made muscles stronger or made my leg grow or has numbed it for a while, I don’t know. But I can tell you, it was so refreshing after that step of faith! And even if my hip starts killing me tomorrow, I can tell you this – God can do miracles. He is our Healer!! And He’s still at work, making my stained-glass-bits life into something beautiful.

May I ask you now, to ask your Father to help you take a step of faith… to surrender; to abide in Him. He is at work in You! The power that raised Jesus from the dead is in you, if you’re a believer!!!!
Whee!!! 🙂